My 7 Wonders of the World

This is a special edition of my Favourites series.

It seems like there are so many variations of the Seven Wonders of the World floating around that I decided I would create my own from places that I’ve actually been.

My 7 Wonders of the World

Machu Picchu, Peru

Without a doubt, Machu Picchu is the most spectacular, awe-inspiring site that my eyes have ever seen. It absolutely lives up to all the hype! I trekked 33 kilometres over three days from Lares to Ollantaytambo before finally taking a train to Aguas Calientes and making the early morning trip to Machu Picchu. From touring the ancient capital of the Incas to hiking Wayna Picchu, the whole experience was incredible from start to finish. These Incan ruins need to be on every person’s bucket list.

Machu Picchu

Pyramids of Giza, Egypt

While I was planning my trip to Egypt, people were constantly asking me Why Egypt? This question seriously puzzled me. Don’t people understand that to see the pyramids one would have to go to Egypt? Well this original wonder of the world certainly earned its place. Riding camels around the site didn’t hurt either…

Camel Time

Ha Long Bay, Vietnam

The most recent wonder on my list is the magical Halong Bay. Even on a mostly cloudy day this place had a mystical hold on me. With nearly 2000 limestone islets and floating fishing villages creating a tropical kaleidiscope above the green waters, this place is more than worthy of a spot on the new 7 wonders of the world list… and mine too!

Fishing Village

The Colosseum, Italy

I’ve visited this famous amphitheatre twice now and both times it transported me back in time. I’ve read so many stories and seen so many films (Gladiator anyone?) from the era of the Roman Empire and it is always haunting and humbling to be standing in a place so rich in history and tragedy. I can only imagine how impressive it would have been back in its glory days.

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The Eiffel Tower, France

Paris je t’aime! Sometimes I still can’t believe that I’m not living in a chic apartment in the Cinquième (5e) arrondissement splitting my time between the cafe culture and long walks along the Seine. But, I digress. There is no building on earth that I was more excited to see than the Eiffel Tower. After studying French for 8 years, this was the place that I most wanted to see when I went to France and the place that I would most like to re-visit… and soon!

Paris

Alhambra, Spain

This palace/fortress, originally constructed in 889 and reconstructed in the mid-11th century by the Moors was a major highlight of my 3 months in Spain. It might not be as popular as some of the other wonders on this list but it is every bit as beautiful. My only regret is that I didn’t take more pictures… I was too busy experiencing in the present tense.

Alhambra

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

Croatia, Croatia, Croatia. The country that won my heart in one, all-to-brief week. And the crowning jewel is this absolutely stunning national park filled with turquoise lakes and magnificent waterfalls. This was the perfect day trip from Zagreb and a must-see stop for any trip to the Balkans. I can’t wait to go back!

Plitvice Lakes

 

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Rediscovering Rome: 10 Years Later

Ciao!

It’s rare when I get the opportunity to revisit a place that I’ve been before simply because my bucket list is long enough for several lifetimes. However, I always knew that I would go back to Rome. Maybe it was my belief in the legend of the Trevi Fountain coin toss or maybe it was the fact that my memories were going dimmer with each passing year, but whatever the reason I am so glad to be here again. The gelato is just as good as I remember it but the city is far more beautiful and vibrant.

Taverna dei Quarenta

This time around I did a lot of pre-trip research that is definitely paying off. So far we have skipped the lines to the Colosseum and the Vatican, which was a godsend in the heat wave we are currently experiencing. We’ve eaten at some delicious restaurants including Taverna dei Quaranta courtesy of the blog Revealed Rome. And we’ve visited sites that I missed the first time around.

I was delighted to leisurely stroll through the Roman Forum instead of being hearded onto a bus and missing so much of the history that makes the city of Rome a living museum. We also found ourselves at the tranquil and uncrowded Garden of Oranges behind the Church of Santa Sabina, which boasts the BEST view of Rome. The dreamy twilight was the perfect setting for the end to our first day of sightseeing and I was so enthuised that I could have stayed there all night. The eternal city has found a way to make old things very new again and reinvigorated this travelista for the journey to come.

Colosseum-1

View from the Garden of Oranges

View from the Garden of Oranges

Next up: The Great Pizza Quest!